EUROTRASH News Round Up Thursday!
The Giro d’Italia, Tour de France and the Vuelta a España are all behind us for 2016 and even cyclo-cross has started in Belgium, but the season is far from over. We have reports and video from the Grand Prix de Wallonie, the Coppa Bernocchi and the cross in Geraardsbergen. In other cycling news: The Worlds TTT, 2017 start towns for the Giro and Vuelta, 2020 Worlds in Veneto, Primus Classic Impanis-Van Petegem, 3 more years for Movistar, Milano-Torino, Tom Zirbel’s Hour Record, contract news from Giant-Alpecin, Gazprom-RusVelo, BMC and Wanty-Groupe Gobert. We finish with video of BMC’s Samu Sanchez going out of the Vuelta.
TOP STORY: Worlds TTT to Fail?
Much has been said about the World road championships being held in Qatar and wether or not it was a good idea due to the heat, course and the price of getting there. It now appears that the Lotto Soudal team will not be taking part in the team time trial and have stated that the amount spent by the team would not be worth the minimal exposure they would receive as they don’t expect to finish in the top five places.
The UCI are rumored to be paying the teams some money to help with expenses, but no where near the thousands of Euros it will cost to ship riders, team personnel and equipment to the Middle East. This year there are not WorldTour points up for grabs either, so where is the incentive for most of the teams?
Grand Prix de Wallonie 2016
The start of the 57th edition of the Grand Prix de Wallonie was given under the blazing sun in Beaufays. The nine leaders of the race enjoyed a maximum advantage of almost six minutes. Lotto Soudal and Etixx – Quick-Step took the responsibility to control the peloton and chase down the nine riders in front. The leading group was reeled in on the Côte de Lustin and that’s where the finale started. On the next climb a new series of attacks wed out the peloton and seven riders managed to get away. Tony Gallopin represented Lotto Soudal in the front group. They stayed away until the foot of the Côte de la Citadelle de Namur. Tiesj Benoot and Tony Gallopin rode attentively at the front of the peloton and when several riders attacked, Gallopin reacted. He set a high pace and dropped the others. It looked like he was riding solo to the finish line, but with fifty meters to go, Vakoc came really close. In the sprint the Frenchman of Lotto Soudal won just ahead of the Czech rider. This victory is the first one for Gallopin in 2016.
Winner in Wallonie, Tony Gallopin (Lotto Soudal): “The team did a perfect job today. All day long we were positioned on the first rows of the peloton chasing down the front group. The attack on the second last climb of the race was a good starting point. We were with seven good riders and we managed to create a small gap pretty fast. Bakelants was very good today. He was the one that set up the breakaway and his teammate Pozzovivo was among us as well. We worked together but it wasn’t perfect. That’s the reason why we were reeled in at the foot of the citadel. When we were caught by the peloton I had a moment to recover. I found my own pace and I moved up to the fifteenth position. The further we went uphill, the better I felt and the better I was positioned in the bunch. At a certain moment I felt ready to attack once again and I gave everything I had. Two years ago I finished second on the citadel. This climb suits me very well. In the last fifty meters Vakoc came really close and the stress was getting to me. Fortunately I went fast enough to bring home the victory. The team gave me permission to change my program because I wanted to focus on the European Championships that are coming up this Sunday. That’s why I didn’t participate in the races in Canada. Instead I chose to ride the Tour of Britain before I came here for the Grand Prix de Wallonie. It feels really good to know that the team trusts me. In the Tour of Britain I felt better every day. I hoped to win a stage there, but unfortunately that didn’t happen. But my focus is on Sunday, that’s when I want to be really good.”
2nd, Petr Vakoc (Etixx – Quick-Step): “I am very disappointed, because the opportunity to take the victory was there. Grand Prix de Wallonie is a race I really like, suited to my characteristics and I was hoping of winning it. The team did an excellent job throughout the day, protecting and always keeping me out of the wind”, said Petr, who went on to make an analysis of the hectic last kilometers: “When Tony attacked, I was a little bit boxed in and couldn’t follow him immediately, so I lost the momentum. Once I found the space to go, I took off, gained ground back, but couldn’t pass him on the line, so congrats to him. It’s a pity, because the form was there, but on the other hand it motivates me even more for the European Championships in Bretagne, where I am ready to give 100%, just as I did today.”
3rd, Jérôme Baugnies (Wanty-Groupe Gobert): “It is a good result for the team. I could get a better result but I remain positive for the Tour de l’Eurométropole and Binche-Chimay-Binche”
Grand Prix de Wallonie Result:
1. Tony Gallopin (Fra) Lotto Soudal in 5:06:17
2. Petr Vakoc (Cze) Etixx – Quick-Step
3. Jérôme Baugnies (Bel) Wanty-Groupe Gobert at 0:01
4. Huub Duijn (Ned) Roompot-Oranje Peloton
5. Nicolas Edet (Fra) Cofidis
6. Tiesj Benoot (Bel) Lotto Soudal at 0:04
7. Baptiste Planckaert (Bel) Wallonie Bruxelles-Group Protect
8. Rasmus Guldhammer (Den) Stölting Service Group
9. Jonathan Hivert (Fra) Fortuneo-Vital Concept
10. Fabian Wegmann (Ger) Stölting Service Group.
Coppa Bernocchi 2016
Italian champion Giacomo Nizzolo (Trek-Segafredo), riding for the Italian National team, beat the Bardiani-CSF pair of Nicola Ruffoni and Paolo Simion in the bunch sprint at the end of the Coppa Bernocchi in Legnano on Wednesday.
There was an eight man escape that gained a maximum of 4 minutes, but they were all caught after 60 kilometers except Ricardo Vilela (Caja Rural-Seguros RGA) and Vitaliy Buts (Kolss-BDC Team). Sonny Colbrelli (Bardiani-CSF), Francesco Gavazzi (Androni-Sidermec) and Matteo Busato (Wilier-Southeast) eventually joined them for a 45 second lead on the final lap. Davide Rebellin (CCC-Sprandi Polkowice) and Filippo Pozzato (Wilier-Southeast) tried to cross, but the peloton wouldn’t allow it and the lead was cut.
Colbrelli and Vilela jumped away with less than 30K to go, they joined by Mauro Finetto (Unieuro-Wilier), Mirko Selvaggi (Androni-Sidermec), Lorenzo Rota (Bardiani-CSF), Maciej Paterski (CCC Sprandi) and Antonio Di Sante (GM Europa Ovini) 10 kilometers later. In the end the bunch came back together in the final 15 kilometers and in the bunch sprint Nizzolo was the fastest.
Coppa Bernocchi Result:
1. Giacomo Nizzolo (Ita) Trek-Segafredo in 4:25:53
2. Nicola Ruffoni (Ita) Bardiani-CSF
3. Paolo Simion (Ita) Bardiani-CSF
4. Carlos Barbero Cuesta (Spa) Caja Rural-Seguros RGA
5. Filippo Pozzato (Ita) Wilier Triestina-Southeast
6. Davide Vigano (Ita) Androni Giocattoli-Sidermec
7. Ryan Gibbons (RSA) Dimension Data
8. Gian Marco Di Francesco (Ita) Norda-Mg. K Vis
9. Roman Maikin (Rus) Gazprom-RusVelo
10. Arman Kamyshev (Kaz) Astana.
Brico Cross Geraardsbergen 2016
The cyclo-cross season in Belgium got under way in Geraardbergen at the weekend. The race took in the iconic cobbled climb of the Kapelmuur and World champion Wout Van Aert (Crelan-Vastgoedservice) got the better of Marlux-Napoleon Games triplets of Michael Vanthourenhout, Klaas Vantornout and Kevin Pauwels.
Brico Cross Geraardsbergen Result:
1. Wout Van Aert (Bel) Crelan-Vastgoedservice in 1:00:02
2. Michael Vanthourenhout (Bel) Marlux-Napoleon Games at 0:04
3. Klaas Vantornout (Bel) Marlux-Napoleon Games at 0:08
4. Kevin Pauwels (Bel) Marlux-Napoleon Games
5. Corne Van Kessel (Ned) Telenet-Fidea at 0:14
6. Laurens Sweeck (Bel) Era-Murprotec at 0:19
7. Jens Adams (Bel) Crelan-Vastgoedservice at 0:28
8. Dieter Vanthourenhout (Bel) Marlux-Napoleon Games at 0:40
9. Julien Taramarcaz (Swi) Era-Murprotec
10. Tim Merlier (Bel) Crelan-Vastgoedservice at 0:46.
Brico Cross Geraardsbergen:
Giro100: Sardinia to Host the Big Start of This Historic Edition
For the third time the island will be the scenic setting of the Giro d’Italia Big Start, following 1991 and 2007, hosting three stages for sprinters and finisseurs. Fabio Aru describes his very own Sardinia. #Giro100 is the official event hashtag.
Giro d’Italia 2017 will be the race’s 100th edition, a historic milestone that will start from Sardinia for the third time in its long history. The Big Start of the Corsa Rosa – organized by RCS Sport/La Gazzetta dello Sport from Friday 5 to Sunday 28 May – was unveiled this morning in Milan. The race will include three in line stages on the island: Alghero-Olbia (203km), Olbia-Tortolì (208km) and Tortolì-Cagliari (148km).
The 2017 edition will mark the 88th Big Start of the race from within Italy, 12 starts having been made from abroad. The first time Giro d’Italia was raced in Sardinia was in 1961; an occasion that marked the 100th anniversary of the birth of the Italian kingdom. The Corsa Rosa, which started in Turin, arrived on the island for Stage 4, Cagliari-Cagliari, won by Oreste Magni. That edition of the Giro, which ended in Milan, was won by Arnaldo Pambianco.
Thirty years later, in 1991, the island saw its first Big Start, with two in line stages and two semi-stages, one of which was a time trial. Franco Chioccioli won that year’s Giro.
The Giro d’Italia’s 90th edition started in Sardinia with the spectacular Caprera-Maddalena Team Time Trial and the unforgettable Teams Presentation on the Italian aircraft carrier Giuseppe Garibaldi. After 10 years away the Corsa Rosa returns its roads on the island.
Fabio Aru, Sardinian professional cyclist, said: “Since I’ve heard the rumors about a Giro Big Start in my Region I’ve always hoped it was really going to happen. Being here today it’s a great feeling and makes me really proud: I’m sure there has been a lot of other decisive factors but even being able to think that my success on a bike could be a positive contribution for making this Big Start happen makes me very happy. On top of that, thinking that this is going to be the 100th Giro d’Italia, I couldn’t ask for more. I hope that this important event will kickstart in Sardinia a competitive cycling movement able to organize many races at all age levels, allowing young riders to grow. I will make my next year’s racing programs with our sport directors at the end of November, but I can certainly say that I wouldn’t like to miss a Giro that starts in my Sardinia for anything in the world!”
RCS MediaGroup Chairman and CEO, Urbano Cairo, said: “I’m proud to contribute to the emotion of the Giro d’Italia, which I’ve been passionate about since I was a child, when I followed my hero, Felice Gimondi. The Giro is in our DNA, a national treasure that we want to valorize at the highest possible level. We will start from Sardinia, one of our country’s most beautiful regions, and I’m sure that the 100th edition will be truly special. My intention is to grow the Giro d’Italia more and more and take it to the maximum level. We will make important investments along with our partners and everyone who will be part of the future Giro family, be they media, sponsors or political institutions.”
Mr Francesco Pigliaru, Region of Sardinia President, said: “Hosting the Giro d’Italia Big Start in such a special occasion as the 100th edition of the race is not only a great honor for Sardinia, but also a unique occasion to show the world our territory in a different way. These three stages will offer a privileged view on both the coast and the internal part of the island: famous landscapes, loved by tourists from all over the globe, will be portrayed next to less known but as fascinating areas. We are investing heavily in cycle tourism and we know how important cycling is in getting to know a territory in its entirety and appreciate its full beauty. I would like to think that cyclists from all over the world, watching the Giro d’Italia, will fall in love with our roads and will decide to come here and discover Sardinia while pedaling.”
Paolo Bellino, RCS Sport Managing Director, said: “It’s an honor for me being here with you today to launch a historic edition of the Giro d’Italia, the 100th, that I’m certain will be unique. This is an event which is not only part of the sport scenery but it’s part of the cultural and social history of our country. The Big Start from Sardinia will be spectacular thanks to a unique territory, a truly incomparable setting that will host us. The Giro d’Italia is the main event of RCS Group and its prestige and value, both nationally and internationally, keeps growing year on year. This is shown by the number of fans in 194 countries across the five continents attract media, sponsors and local institutions such as the one here with us today and that I would like to thank. We’re proud to represent Italian excellence to the world.”
Mauro Vegni, Giro d’Italia Director, highlighted the importance of this historic Big Start: “This is going to be a very special edition of Giro d’Italia, not only because it’s the 100th one but because the Big Start from Sardinia, an event within the event, is the beginning of a sporting and cultural story of Italy that will last almost a month. This story will be showcased to the world through the unique Italian imagery and international TV coverage. ‘The toughest race in the world’s most beautiful place’ is not just a romantic claim but also a statement of fact. It’s going to be a surprising Giro, not only in the complete course which we will reveal in full at the end of October, but for the locations we are going to visit, locations that made the history of our country.”
STAGE 1 – Alghero – Olbia – 203km
Moderately hilly stage: a constant series of up and downs along the northern coast of the island with a few KOM climbs and many other short punchy climbs. The last categorized climb, 20km before the finish line, is San Pantaleo, which could become a launch ramp for the finisseurs to anticipate the sprinters. It’s a 5km climb with 3km around the average 8% inclination, the toughest section being in the first part. The route undulates again until the finish line in Olbia, where teams should work hard to end up in a bunch sprint.
Stage 2 – Olbia – Tortolì – 208km
This Medium Mountain stage could end up in a bunch sprint. The first part of the stage is in the Nuoro region, an internal part of the island, and is characterized by three long climbs: the first toward Bitti and Orune (categorized as KOM), the second harder climb toward Nuoro city centre (KOM) and the third to overcome Genna Silana Pass (KOM). The last 50km are mostly descents or flat, but the course with many bends could create problems to close eventual gaps. Stage could end up with a sprint but this has to be conquered.
Stage 3 – Tortolì – Cagliari – 148km
This stage is almost flat with few mild hills along the course. After Villasimius there are some short punchy climbs along the coastal route. After that the road becomes flat toward the finish line in Cagliari until what’s likely to be a bunch sprint.
2017 Vuelta Starts in Nîmes
Unipublic director Javier Guillen, and Julien Plantier, Sports councilor of the City of Nîmes, have officially present the Grand Depart of La Vuelta 2017. The 72nd edition of the Vuelta a España will start on August 19 and in Nîmes and finish in Madrid on September 10.
“For us it is a privilege, an honor and proof that La Vuelta is able to cross borders,” noted Javier Guillen. The director of La Vuelta described the French town as “extraordinary, with many aesthetic resources, tradition, heritage and enthusiastic audience with cycling, with Spain and the Spanish.”
Julien Plantier pointed out that the authorities of Nîmes would make every effort to make the event “a success at all levels: sports, tourism and economically” and that the course being developed is “simply spectacular.”
The first stage of the Vuelta 2017 will be a team time trial entirely in Nîmes, combining the traditional and modern aspects of the city. “The Roman amphitheater – candidate to become Unesco World Heritage – is the great protagonist icon we want to do,” explained Guillen. Another fact that was revealed is that at least one more stage finish would be in France. The rest is a surprise.
The best bits of la Vuelta 2016:
The candidacy project for Vicenza and Veneto to host the 2020 road cycling World Championships continues to take shape and expand.
After the official announcement made by attorney Claudio Pasqualin, President of the Promoters Committee, to the microphones of the Rai Sport channel during the live broadcast of the Giro d’Italia stage with arrival in Asolo (Treviso), now they’ve chosen another great moment centered around cycling and the Veneto region to make their point for the bid to host the World Championships. The perfect background is offered by the opening of the CosmoBike Show in Verona (16-19 September), the largest cycling and two wheel trade fair in Italy in terms of interest and participation.
A round table meeting was held with Giovanni Mantovani, General Manager of Veronafiere doing the hosting honors, next to attorney Claudio Pasqualin (with the Vice President of the committee Moreno Nicoletti and council member Alessandro Belluscio), along with the Italian National Team Coach Davide Cassani. Also attending was Cristiano Corazzari, Council member to the Territory for Culture and Sport for the Veneto Region, as a representative for President Luca Zaia. In fact, the Region has been supporting and sponsoring this candidacy right from the beginning; through the World Championship event it aims to draw attention to the Veneto region as a territory with a strong affinity for cycling, where the bicycle is synonymous with great sporting events (professional and amateur), active tourism and environmentally sustainable mobility.
Today’s press conference, which featured the theme “Ciclismo Azzurro”, was built around two main pillars. On one side was the progress made by the Veneto candidacy to host the 2020 road cycling World Championships, presented by the President of the Promoters Committee Claudio Pasqualin. On the other were the projects laid out by the Italian national cycling team after the Rio Olympics, illustrated by the Technical Coordinator for all the teams, Davide Cassani, starting with the road cycling European Championships in Plumelec, France (14-18 September) and the Road Cycling World Championships in Doha, Qatar (9-16 October).
“This project started a while ago, on the wave of enthusiasm and experience matured with the Vicenza stage in the 2013 Giro d’Italia won by Visconti, and then repeated in 2015, with the arrival on Monte Berico, won by Gilbert. Back in 2013 we announced the Vicenza 2020 project in Florence during the road cycling World Championships in Tuscany. The project was warmly received by the then newly-elected President of the International Cycling Union, Britain’s Brian Cookson, as well as the FCI, led by President Renato Di Rocco, with which we immediately reached a deal on an organizational level. Then came the support of Giovanni Malagò, President of the Coni, and the major central and regional political institutions: first and foremost from Graziano Delrio, then under-secretary of the Government Presidency delegated to Sports, and from Luca Zaia, President of the Veneto Region. In this project the support from the Veneto Region has been essential,” explains the President of the Promotion Committee Claudio Pasqualin.
Veneto 2020, Cities & Routes
Road: the Palladio circuit with the ascent on Monte Berico, grand kick off from Venice.
Time trial: Vicenza and Padua headliners.
There could not have been a better place than here today to put the World Championships back on the table, considering Verona’s cycling experience as host of the Rainbow Series twice in the recent past, in 1999 and in 2004.
According to current regulations, there will be 12 races on the 2020 Veneto World Championship program: Junior women’s road/time trial, Junior men’s road/time trial, Under23 road/time trial, Elite women’s road/time trial, Elite men’s road/time trial, plus the two men/women’s team time trials.
“What we are going to present today are the new initiatives regarding the cities which will be involved in the bid to host the World Championships in Veneto in 2020. And that is: all the actual 7 county seats. Vicenza will host the final circuit and some starting lines for the juniors. Padua and Venice will hold the starts of the time trials and the reigning test. Belluno, Rovigo, Treviso and Verona will stage the mass events with the Granfondo races. The World Championship races will take place or finish in the quintessential Palladian City of Vicenza in via Roma, after having taken on and overcome the circuit on Monte Berico. Out of the 7 time trials currently on the schedule, including individuals and teams, 2 will take place entirely in Vicenza and 5 will take off from Padua to come to a close in Vicenza as well. Of the 5 in line tests, 2 will kick off from Padua, 2 from Vicenza and 1 from Venice: this will be the main event, the professional race that was conceived from Piazza San Marco, with a walking pace transfer to the 0 km mark on the Ponte della Libertà bridge; from here the race will officially get underway towards the Riviera del Brenta, to land with 6 or 7 laps around the final circuit, depending on considerations of altimetry and kilometers. The circuit will cover 20.750 km and will be distinguished by 2 climbs: Monte Berico for 1.150 km with an average incline of 7% and maximum gradient of 11%; Via Costacolonna for 1.700 km with an average incline of 7,1% and maximum gradient of 13%” continues explaining attorney Claudio Pasqualin.
And it’s not all just about the Pros… 4 Granfondo events have been planned for the Saturday on the eve of the start of the World Championships, with starting line-ups from Belluno, Rovigo, Treviso and Verona. Four rivers of cycling tourists will all converge on Vicenza for a multi-colored finale, just like the World Championship rainbow colors. Furthermore, the Thursday of the kermis, which traditionally does not feature medal competitions, will be the occasion for a company-relay: that is, a team time trial on the circuit at the heart of the World Championships to offer companies the chance to motivate their employees in special team building activities.
Veneto 2020, The Next Stages
Road to Bergen…
Right now Veneto is competing in the race to host the 2020 World Championships against the candidacy bid by Holland. In any case, the communications and PR road show by the Promotion Committee will continue with the aim of reinforcing the candidacy bid for Veneto 2020 Vicenza and garner further consensus among major representatives on the international cycling scene.
“We are optimistic and confident; the project is in an advanced phase, we’ve put together a high level dossier and it is right and necessary to be optimists. It won’t be easy, but now we’re seriously aiming towards the milestone in Bergen, Norway, where next year in September the 2020 World Championships will be assigned. As we already did in Richmond, USA last year, a delegation for the Promotion Committee for the 2020 World Championships in Veneto will fly to Qatar a month from now for the Doha World Championships: it will be the crucial moment to prepare the decisive next steps towards the nomination by the 2020 World Championship organization. We will have a special ambassador by our side, one who is revered in Qatar and around the world. I’m referring to Eddy Merckx, the strongest rider of all time. Furthermore, this week we will be attending the CosmoBike trade fair in Verona, distributing promotional informational material and taking other specific measures at the Regione Veneto stand,” concludes attorney Pasqualin.
Davide Cassani – FCI, Technical Coordinator for Italian National Teams
“As a rider my first World Championship was in Italy, in Veneto; and my last was in Italy again, in Sicily. To wear the azure jersey on hometown roads, in your native country, cheered along by your local fans, is truly an indescribable emotion. And then the World Championship is an event that is good for everyone, for the entire movement. I know the members of this promotion committee very well and I believe they are the cycling soul of the city of Vicenza, considering the excellent job they did with the stages in the Giro in 2013 and 2015. I think this is the best team to aim for this rainbow milestone, and I hope that 7 years from the great 2013 edition in Tuscany and Florence, the World Championship can return to Italy playing a starring role. It can be a fantastic World Championship in every sense, bringing together cycling history with the scenic and cultural heritage of a great region. The World Championship becomes a photograph of the territory that hosts it that is distributed throughout the world. And then from a technical standpoint there are routes that can offer plenty of interesting inspirations. I would say that there is really everything you need to give a great gift to anyone who pedals in all of Italy.”
Milano-Torino: The Most Ancient Classic is 140 Years Old
The Classic will be raced on Wednesday 28 September on an almost identical course to the last edition, when Diego Rosa won from Rafal Majka and Fabio Aru. The last winner spoke about the Classic’s importance. It starts at San Giuliano Milanese and finishes on the Colle di Superga (climbed twice) after 186km.
Now at its 97th edition – but older than any other bicycle race, having been first run in 1876 – Milano-Torino NamedSport is 140 years old. Previously won by many great cycling champions this race – organized by RCS Sport/La Gazzetta dello Sport – is an international level Classic end of season cycling battle. The last edition was won by Diego Rosa with an attack on the final ramps of the Colle di Superga.
The cyclist from Piedmont, the Italian Region in which the race ends, said: “My victory last year in Milano-Torino is always going to be one of the most important days in my career. After the Rio Olympics at the beginning of August I’m starting racing again here in Quèbec and I’m very curious about my form. I’m sure anyway I will do my best in the Classic. As I’ve shown last year the final Superga climb is perfect for my characteristics, and I will do everything within my ability to come to the race in the best possible shape. The following day I will race GranPiemonte too and in these two races I want to perform at my best, for myself and for all the people of my region that will support me on the roads”.
The route starts in Sesto Ulteriano and rolls across the Po Valley along flat roads, all the way through the Vigevano plains and the Lomellina region, up to Casale Monferrato, where the race profile becomes wavier, with gentle climbs and descents that lead to the final circuit.
The route rolls past San Mauro Torinese and all along the Po River in Corso Casale, where it takes in the first climb to the Basilica of Superga. The road then drops down into Rivodora on a technical descent (diverting 600 meters before the finish) that leads back to San Mauro. Here the route goes up again, all the way to the finish, with gradients exceeding 10%. The fixed feed zone is located in Morano sul Po (km 92-95).
The last 5 km (to be covered twice, with the exception of the final 600 meters) start in Torino, in Corso Casale, at the foot of the climb that leads to the Basilica of Superga. The average rise is 9.1%, with a mid-climb peak of 14% and long stretches with a 10% gradient. There is a left-hand U-turn 600m before the finish that leads to an 8.2% climb, with one last bend 50 meters before the finish, on 7m wide asphalt road.
18 teams: 11 UCI WorldTeams and 7 UCI Professional Continental Teams of eight riders each:
AG2R LA MONDIALE (FRA)
ASTANA PRO TEAM (KAZ)
BMC RACING TEAM (USA)
CANNONDALE-DRAPAC PRO CYCLING TEAM (USA)
LAMPRE – MERIDA (ITA)
MOVISTAR TEAM (ESP)
TEAM GIANT – ALPECIN (GER)
TEAM KATUSHA (RUS)
TEAM SKY (GBR)
TREK – SEGAFREDO (USA)
ANDRONI GIOCATTOLI – SIDERMEC (ITA)
BARDIANI CSF (ITA)
CAJA RURAL-SEGUROS RGA (ESP)
CCC SPRANDI POLKOWICE (POL)
NIPPO – VINI FANTINI (ITA)
WILIER TRIESTINA – SOUTHEAST (ITA).
Van Avermaet to be Honored at Primus Classic Impanis-Van Petegem
Greg Van Avermaet will lead BMC Racing Team’s 7-rider roster at Primus Classic Impanis-Van Petegem this Saturday, 17 September, where his Olympic Road Race victory will be celebrated.
Van Avermaet, who won the 2014 edition, will be motivated for the win, Sports Director Valerio Piva said.
“We’re going to Primus Classic Impanis-Van Petegem with a strong leader in Greg Van Avermaet who will line up after his win in Montreal last Sunday. Greg won this race two years ago and will be motivated to win again as it’s his first time racing on home soil since the Olympic Games. We have a solid team in support of Greg and we’ll be looking to race aggressively,” Piva explained.
Van Avermaet is lining up with good form after racing in Canada.
“It’s always nice to race in Belgium with the crowds and after my win at the Olympic Games I think it will be extra special. I’ve won the race before and I’d like to continue my good form and good results this weekend at Primus Classic Impanis-Van Petegem,” Van Avermaet said.
Primus Classic Impanis-Van Petegem (17 September)
Brent Bookwalter (USA), Marcus Burghardt (GER), Floris Gerts (NED), Michael Schär (SUI), Greg Van Avermaet (BEL), Peter Velits (SVK), Taylor Eisenhart (USA).
Sports Director: Valerio Piva (ITA).
182 victories have been achieved by the Blues, which have covered more than 1,700,000 kilometers with the green ‘M’ on its chest sine Telefónica joined as title sponsor in 2011. The team remains a reference on social media-more than 1,100,000 followers- and develops several social initiatives, while also making visible sporting and digital activities key to lead society forward.
The Telefónica headquarters in Madrid held on Monday a special event as the company and cycling corporation Abarca Sports signed the extension of their partnership, which will see the Pamplona-based squad wearing the Movistar brand as title sponsor through 2019. The gathering, consisting of a press conference followed by a presentation with Telefónica employees, was attended by Carlos López Blanco, Head of Public and Regulation Affairs for Telefónica, and Movistar Team general manager Eusebio Unzué, as well as riders Nairo Quintana and Alejandro Valverde. At the Central Building in Telefónica’s Madrid complex, celebrations continued from the eve’s historic victory by Quintana in the Vuelta a España, his second Grand Tour success after the 2014 Giro d’Italia. The final red jersey worn by the Colombian was notably featuring at the event, where Unzué also announced contract renewals for Quintana (through 2019) and Valverde, the latter set to be signed in the next few days.
“We’ve got the best team in the world at the moment,” expressed López Blanco during the press conference. “The sporting results can hardly be better; our brand exposure and positioning are excellent all over the world, especially in Spain and Latin America, essential markets for Telefónica; and above everything else, this team represents bond and friendliness like no other. Our progression on digital media has been constant all over these six years, and as with all previous aspects, makes us satisfied and proud to have joined our name to cycling in this team. Enjoying results like this Vuelta win by Nairo Quintana is sensational. We’ve got tremendous confidence on the future of the team and our collaboration with them.”
In similar terms, joyful and full of gratitude towards Telefónica, spoke Unzué, who will see his project reaching 40 years of uninterrupted activity at the end of the new term: “At Telefónica, you were brave when you took that gamble for cycling in such a difficult moment, and we can’t thank you enough for that. It makes us happy to put a smile on the face of so many people. We’ve got a strong team in Alejandro, Nairo and all their team-mates, and now that both are sure to continue, our goal for this new, three-year term is leading cycling as we did for the past six season. We now start working on building a good future for the squad and bringing Telefónica more reasons to remain confident about what we can do.”
The signing of this new, three-year contract between Telefónica and Abarca Sports is the fruit of full confidence in an utterly successful sporting project-three consecutive UCI WorldTour titles (2013-15), the Blues also leading in 2016 with just three events remaining; more than 180 victories in the most important races around the world-which also reflects some of the company’s core values: effort, tenacity, gentleness, respect for the environment and passion towards technology and all opportunities it offers in the world nowadays. At the latter, the Movistar Team has always revealed itself as one of Telefónica’s best ambassadors: 1,100,000 people follow the team-a figure almost doubled since the start of the 2016 season-through its different social media profiles on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and SoundCloud, combined with the official website www.movistarteam.com.
During these six years, and thanks to tight cooperation between Telefónica and Abarca Sports, those fans have been able to know better one of the toughest sports in the world, through all kinds of initiatives. Recreational rides, such as the Marchas Ciclistas Movistar or the Fiesta de la Bici Movistar, have taken the green ‘M’ to all points of Spain; the roads of the Tour and La Vuelta-or even some innovative challenges, like the #RetosMovistarTeam-have been covered with team shirts; and even away from those roads, games likes Chapas, developments on Augmented Reality and 360º video, sports fans have got closer to a team that will continue to pursuit success and prestige for another three seasons.
On September 16, 2016, Rally Cycling’s Tom Zirbel will attempt to write his name into the history books and break the American Hour Record in Aguascalientes, Mexico. Zirbel, a noted time trialist, will attempt to break the almost two decade old record of 51.505 km set by Norm Alvis in 1997. One of the toughest feats to attempt in athletics, it will serve as a farewell ride to Zirbel’s professional career as he will retire at the end of the season. Zirbel, who spent ten years in the professional ranks, is one of the hardest working and most well-respected riders in the domestic peloton. His palmarés includes wins at the Tour of Gila, Tour of Missouri, Volta ao Alentejo, North Star Grand Prix and the National Time Trial Championship in 2013.
“I think the hour record really suits my abilities and I think an American record would be a great way to cap off my cycling career,” said Zirbel. “The American record is 51.505 km so going at least one meter further is the primary goal! It’s hard to predict what distance I’m capable of because I’ve never ridden the velodrome in Aguascalientes, but based on my training of late, I’m optimistic that it’s going to go well.”
The velodrome in Aguascalientes was chosen due to its high elevation (6,194 ft) and reputation as one of the fastest tracks in the world. Zirbel has been training at altitude for the past month at the Boulder Valley Velodrome. The velodrome is the same dimensions and was designed by the same person, Peter Junek, as the track in Aguascalientes. Zirbel has also been working with Kevin Nicol, a strong time trial veteran who has done several hour record attempts at the Masters level. Zirbel’s specific training has included power work, threshold intervals and extended efforts to help him maintain his aero position for the duration of the attempt.
In his final season, Zirbel has been dominant in time trials, taking wins at the Tour of the Gila, North Star Grand Prix and US National Team Time Trial Championships. In addition, Zirbel finished second at the US National Individual Time Trial Championships. Zirbel has shown throughout his career a dedication to his team and teammates. Heading into one of the toughest challenges of his career, Zirbel still looks to give back to his Rally Cycling team.
“None of this would be feasible without the support of Rally Cycling and its sponsors,” added Zirbel. To do this right, takes an enormous amount of planning and resources and they have been 100% committed to supporting me. My motivation is to end my career on a high note and pay back the team for all their hard work and support.”
Over the past few months the team has worked closely with team sponsors Diamondback, HED and Lazer to provide Zirbel with the fastest machine and equipment possible. Zirbel will make the record attempt on a modified version of his Diamondback Serios time trial machine outfitted with special HED disc wheels. To cut drag further, his hour record machine will be equipped with HED Corsair Flat Aero handlebars, Speedplay Zero Aero pedals and a ISM Adamo Podium saddle. Zirbel himself will be outfitted in a Rally Cycling skinsuit from Borah Teamwear, Lazer WASP helmet and shoe covers from Velotoze.
“Tom has had a long career and is one of the best time trialists in US history,” said Performance Manager Jonas Carney. “We thought it would be cool for him to make an attempt at the US hour record before he retires. In the last couple years the hour record has come back into the spotlight and it seems like good timing. Tom’s fired up for this effort and we’ve done everything we can to make sure he has what he needs to break the record.”
Tom Zirbel Hour Record Attempt
Start time: TBA.
Russian rider Dmitry Kozonchuk reinforces Gazprom – RusVelo
Gazprom – RusVelo announces а two-year deal with Russian rider Dmitry Kozonchuk. Dmitry is a versatile rider who’ve been playing an important role in assisting leaders within eight seasons in the WorldTour.
“Gazprom – RusVelo has reached another level since 2012 when I spent a season in RusVelo and I am very happy to sign this deal. Next season will be very intense and I hope that I have an opportunity not only to work on the team leaders, but also a chance for personal victory. There are a lot of young and talented riders in the team and I hope my experience can be useful for them,” – said Dmitry Kozonchuk.
Team GM Renat Khamidulin: “Dmitry already raced for Rusvelo in 2012 and we are satisfied with his comeback. Kozonchuk is a very experienced rider, he did a great job supporting legends of cycling such as Denis Menchov and Joaquim Rodriguez. We want Dmitry to spread his knowledge and experience to our younger riders and help the team to achieve great results.”
Dmitry Kozonchuk was born on 5th of April 1985 in Voronezh. Kozonchuk started his career in Rabobank Continental Team in 2006 and later he joined Rabobank ProTeam. In 2011 Dmitry went to Spanish-based Geox-TMC Transformers for one season and in 2012 he moved to RusVelo. Seasons of 2013 – 2016 Kozonchuk spent in the Team Katusha where he helped team leaders to achieve their goals on the highest level.
Experienced road captain and core member of the team since the beginning of its existence, Curvers, has signed a new agreement that commits him for a further year. “I’m very happy to have been with the team for a decade and I’m satisfied with my contract extension,” said Curvers. “The team has always shown confidence in me and still does, which is confirmed with this new contract. We are in a phase of development within the team in terms of both top riders and talents coming through over the next few years, and I am looking forward to contributing to their development and creating some great results with them.”
Coach Rudi Kemna (NED) elaborated on the extension: “For us it wasn’t a difficult choice to continue to work with Roy and we’re delighted to have him onboard for another season. He’s a great person and a superb athlete, who breathes our philosophy. Since the beginning he has been one of our core members, and his experience and route knowledge is critical in both the classics and Grand Tours. For the upcoming season he will continue to be one of our main road captains who will guide the young guys in the team.”
Ten Dam, 35 years old, made his debut for Team Giant-Alpecin at the beginning of 2016. He had a very good first season with the team, which convinced him that bike racing is still what he loves best. He commented: “During the Tour I realized I wanted to continue racing. I felt the youngsters could still benefit from my legs and my experience. I am really motivated to work with my teammates and staff for another challenging season. The signing of Wilco [Kelderman] has also given me motivation to continue and we have got a stellar GC team next year and I hope to play a big role in it!”
“This season Laurens has shown that he can offer a lot of value to the team both on and off the bike,” explained Kemna. “He has adapted perfectly to our way of working, which is remarkable, considering he has been in other pro teams for a decade. This year we saw that spending part of the season in the US can be combined successfully with a steady road season in Europe, and that will be the plan for next season, too. He’ll continue to be important to support our young GC guys in the stage races and Grand Tours. On top of that, we saw at the Tour of California that he is able to compete for a top ten place in the shorter stage races, which is an achievable objective for the next season, too.”
Rosskopf, who has been with BMC Racing Team since 2015, claimed his first win since joining the team when he won the opening stage of the Tour du Limousin and went on to defend his lead.
“It is a pleasure to announce that Joey Rosskopf will remain with BMC Racing Team. Joey has been developing well in the two seasons he has been with us, which he proved with his Tour du Limousin victory, so it was an easy decision to keep him in our ranks. I look forward to seeing Joey continue to learn and develop as a rider with BMC Racing Team,” General Manager, Jim Ochowicz said.
Rosskopf is looking forward to the opportunity to gain more experience at the UCI WorldTour level.
“I’m super excited for the chance to stay with BMC Racing Team. I just want to keep making steps forward and get better at competing at this level. I assume we’ll be doing even more UCI WorldTour races next year but that’s the goal, it’s a super high level of racing. I learned a lot from being in the position of leadership at the Tour du Limousin, winning the first stage and defending throughout the race. It gives me confidence and I feel really good about racing for the rest of this season and next year,” Rosskopf admitted.
In keeping with BMC Racing Team policy no other details of the contract were released.
“I’m so happy with this opportunity. Now I’m sure that I can still focus everything on cycling. I absolutely wanted to take part in the big races again,” Guillaume Levarlet said.
Guillaume Levarlet comes from the French continental team HP BTP – Auber 93. This season he finished as 12th in the Tour de Doubs (1.1) and as 15th in the general classification of the Tour de l’Ain (2.1). He got the ninth place in the GC of La Méditérannéenne. “I would like to thank the team HP BTP-Auber 93 for this wonderful year 2017. I got a few good results but there weren’t many mountain races in our race schedule.”
The 31-year-old rider was part of professional teams before when he was with FDJ between 2008 and 2009, with Saur-Sojasun between 2010 and 2012 and with Cofidis Solutions Crédits between 2013 and 2014. “I will begin my eleventh season. Wanty-Groupe Gobert is my first experience abroad. I would like to ride Liège-Bastogne-Liège because it is a fantastic race.”
His main mission will be to protect our French climber Guillaume Martin in the mountains. “I know my place in the professional peloton. I am not a team captain. I’m better as a teammate. Guillaume Martin is a talented rider. I’m looking forward to helping him in the mountain races such as Paris-Nice or the Critérium du Dauphiné.”
After signing Wesley Kreder, Guillaume Van Keirsbulck, Xandro Meurisse, Guillaume Levarlet is the fourth new rider of Wanty-Groupe Gobert for next season.
Kévin Van Melsen, Thomas Degand, Kenny Dehaes, Frederik Backaert, Guillaume Martin, Tom Devriendt already had a contract for 2016.
Heartbreak at la Vuelta
BMC’s Samu Sanchez was looking good for a top ten overall place in the Vuelta a España until the stage 19 time trial. You can see his dramatic crash in this video and the heartbreak when he realized his race was over.
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